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tv   Hardball With Chris Matthews  MSNBC  March 8, 2019 4:00pm-5:00pm PST

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h what a week. we're out of time. we're going to cover those hearings for paul manafort and roger stone and a whole lot more. "hardball" with chris matthews is up next. trump gets it wrong. let's play "hardball." ♪ president trump was out there today distorting the words of the federal judge who sentenced paul manafort to four years in prison. he tweeted a total untruth that quote both the judge and lawyer in the paul manafort case shouted loudly and for the world to hear that there was no collusion with russia. the judge said nothing of the kind. and he repeated that false hood
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from the south lawn of the white house. >> i feel very badly for paul manafort. i think it's been a tough time for hum. but if you notice both his lawyer, a highly respected man and a very highly respected judge, the judge said there was no collusion with russia. the judge -- i mean for whatever reason, i was very honored by it also mod the staumt that this had nothing to do with collusion with russia. so keep it going. let's go. keep the hoax going. just a hoax. >> that's twice now in one day trump said something the judge never said. manafort was sentenced yesterday for committing tax and bank fraud. charges completely unearelottedo russian collusion. ellis didn't say there was no collusion. referring to the fraud case he said manafort is not before the
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court for any allegation that he colluded with the russian government. it does not clear the president of the allegations his campaign collu colluded with russia. and jonathan lumere is white house reporter at "the associated press." joyce, trump, i guess you have to use the word lied here. talking to people not following closely. the judge was simply ruling on a costhat didn't retlilate to rusn collusion by the trump people and trump used that as a statement to say i've been cleared. >> you're absolutely right. this is at best sully, at worst defeatful. it's like you look at someone who had been indicted for bank fraud and said well, no murder. you wouldn't expect prosecutors
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to prove a murder in this case and you wouldn't expect prosecutors to have put on evidence of collusion. so the president is again trying to appeal to his base, cling to some support here. >> this is what they call price discrim naugz in the market i you sell one story to another at a different price. he he's telling people who don't want to hear what happened yesterday. yesterday's trial was not about culugsz. collusion. it was about all sorts of other bad things he he did on his own. what do you make of trump's communication trick? >> this is the strategy the white house has been using petty much from the beginning, one that only accelerated when rudy giuliani came on last spring. it's a lot of smoke screen, misdirection, changing the conversation.
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putting outmistruths and pray apau upon members of the american public and when handed something like this yesterday the president is giuliani have really seized on it to take a swipe at the special counsel. rudy giuliani said he twisted them somewhat to suggest he was punishing robert mueller's team for over reach. they had suggested a much stiffer sentence for manafort. the fact the judge only gave him four years, in giuliani's estimation was proof that the special counsel was out of bounds. so when the report is release can -- >> it seems to me the judge was saying the enemy of the enemy is my friend. i don't like this guy mueller,
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i'm going to reward manafort. a pardon, if there is one anytime, it's politics. are you pardoning richard nixon? it's always politics. is it easier or harder for trump, the politician to pardon manafort now that he got light sentence? >> i think rirlts harder. this is beyond faur. this is extremely lenient compared to the 19 to 24 years he might have gotten if the judge had gone with the guidelines. i think it depends what happens with d.c. >> let's say six. >> if it's adding up to ten, then i can see it being a but of a stronger argument to say manafort committed white collar crimes, just like rudy giuliani was saying he's not a murder.
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he's committed white collar krum. a very easy argument to sell. >> anyway, in doing it secretly. mueller's prosecutors said yesterday that manafort did not fully cooperate, saying quote he told us things we already knew. he did not provide valuable information or cooperation. and it's providing speculation. trump attorney rudy giuliani tells nbc news a pardon isn't being considered at this time. he's not ruling one in or out. when asked about a pardon earlier today, trump also side stepped. >> i don't even discuss it. the only one discussing it is you. >> take a big bite out of this apple.
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it seems to me trump is cute, and rudy giuliani is being very cute at this time. the president himself a is not saying one or the other. >> i think that any sort of pardon for manafort, whatever the sentence would be really a bridge too far, even for this president. the reaction in congress i think would be one of abhorns and repug innocence. there would be action, although the pardon power is broad. it's not unlimited. if it is misused for obstruction of justice and clearly a pardon for manafort would be to reward not only noncooperation but also witness tampering, confidential discussions with the white house after his conviction. potential destruction of
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documents, contempt for the rule of law and as many in the white house says the normal rules don't apply. so i think any pardon for manafort would trig arfire storm. >> pardon all kinds of dirt on him. everybody knows he dwood this to reward him stone walling. johnson. the african-american boxer. and remember that this sentence itself is so lenient, laughably lenient that it would in fact
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trigger that exact feeling that president was playing politics with the justice system. there is a lot of reason to feel that manafort's conduct made him hardly blameless. in fact he's no choir boy. he should be held accountable for not only the acts he did that brought him before the court and also his own giving polling information to russians, while he was a campaign manager, his defiance of the terms of his plea agreement and that kind of basic defiance of rule of law i think has to be taken into account. >> let's talk about conflict of interest and obstruction of justice. he has all kinds of power, this judge to make liech easy for paul manafort. but if the president jumps in
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and pardons him, it seems the president is protecting himself >> and the pardon process isn't meant to be a tool to put himself above the rule of law. the president is supposed to be like everybody else unour constitutional system. accountable. maybe not while he's in the presidency but certainly for violating the law on capitol hill or after he leaves office. i think it's incredibly reassuring to hear senator blumenthal say he believes if trump uses the pardon process, uneszance to protect himself and reward paul manafort for refusing to testify against trump, that congress will react badly. because if they don't uphold the rule of law, then it's shattered and we're nothing more than a banana republic. >> let's go back to the politics and who paul manafort is. he's not only a lobbyist and a
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fixer for putin but instrumental in winning trump the white house. and his -- >> i have fantastic people, paul manafort just came on. he's great. he didn't need to do this but he wanted to. paul, cory, hope, i mean these people what we've been doing has been incredible. >> and paul manafort has done an amazing job. where's paul? paul manafort. oh, good. you made it. >> ironically i interviewed paul manafort at the 2016 republican convention where he defended chants to lock up, we've heard those, hillary clinton. >> lock her up became the anthem for days. all we keep hearing is lock her up. they start singing lock her up. how much hatred can you garner between here and november.
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>> it's not about hatred. the american people don't trust -- shoo is crooked. >> would you say that to her face? >> i'm a gentleman. >> i'm more of a gentleman, right. now the shoe is on the other foot, obviously. and manafort was present for several key events of interest for the special counsel, including the meeting with trump tower. lock her up. trump's outrages public call for russia to hack into hillary clinton's emails, all that is happening while he happened to be on watch >> i've said paul manafort is at the center of this. all the most significant russia-related events co insided with manafort's arrival to the campaign. the trump tower meeting, the rnc platform change that made it
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softer towards russia, the wikileaks documents dump. he had to resign because of his ties to russian oligarchs. but rigit's a pat for the presit to distance himself from someone after it's known they're known by the special counsel. >> he may have done everything he's accused of but i didn't tell him. >> trump is good at keeping people at arm's length. but there were text messages that said trump and their father wrd go up and down trump towerler day. since his appointment, the special counsel robert mueller
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has charges. the question is whether mueller will bring any additional indictments before he reports his findings to attorn a general william barr. joaquin castro of texas who's on the house intelligence committee said the closed door testimony leads him, the congressman to believe the president's family could be next. >> from what i heard i believe there will still be more indictments to come. i think the information leads me to believe members of the president's family could be in legal jeopardy. >> and john brennan also predicted more indictments to come before the final report. >> a lot that special counsel's office has been involved in. >> what do you smell coming between now and the final report.
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raft of indictments because i think bob mueller and his team know if in fact they indict somebody of the trump family that he would not allow bob mueller to continue. >> how is this film developing if you will, like an old polaroid? what's to come before the final report. one step further and buzzer beater because if he was to do that, that would certainly lead the president more aggressively
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and end things. certainly there's speculation and belief the mueller probe is wrapping up toby a matter of days or weeks. if memtbers of the president's family and speculation is centered on his eldest son, if they're in jeopardy, that would be the last stage. >> and what happens if the special counsel goes after family? >> i think that special counsel is a by-the-book prosecutor that's going to respect the high standard of proof beyond a reasonable doubt. if he goes after members of a trump family, he will have a very powerful case but two points to keep in mind, it's not only special counsel, it's also the southern district of new york and state authorities.
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and they may have a lot more on financial crime against donald trump jr. and others. and the last point i'd make is donald trump's testified before various congressional committees including the senate judiciary committee. and i believe there's serious questions in testimony before that committee. not only on muccichael cohen's testimony, but there may be a very powerful case against don trump jr. and others in the trump family and we have yet to see the end of the special counsel unterms of indictments. i believe there's more coming. >> thank you so much. and i think u.s. congress could still make their case right now for impeachment. natasha, short noms here.
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natasha, jonathan and joyce are sticking with me. cohen testified he never asked for a pardon and his lawyer said he did and now the president says cohen's lying about that. the oversight committee gets aits hands on oversight documents of ivanka trump and white house staff is not working for the president here. why elizabeth warren wants to break up amazon now. and the unlikely rose garden strategy. unlikely rose garden strategy we humans are strange creatures. other species avoid pain and struggle. we actually... seek it out. other species do difficult things because they have to. we do difficult things. because we like to.
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and the president tweeted bad wire and fraudster and ask for a pardon. his lawyers totally contradicted him. he also badly wanted to work at the white house. he lieued. strange way to talk. and trump's people first broeched the subject of a pardon. he said michael was open to the ongoing dangling of a pardon and in the media during that time period he directed his attorney to explore possibilities oof a pardon. president trump just before heading to alabama added this warning. >> i know that michael cohen lied about the pardon. it's a stone cold lie. when he lied about the pardon, that was really a lie. and he knew all about pardons.
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his lawyer said they went to my lawyers and asked for a pardon. >> and tweeting mr. president let me reminds you today is international women's day. you may want to use today to apologize to your own lies to women like stephanie mcdougal. i want to start with jonathan about this pardoning and not pardoning. he wants to differentiate in his favor and where he dispenses his favor. i like manafort. i hate cohen. explain why different attitudes towards these two gentleman. >> he's made that distinction very early on from this past summer when both of them ended up in court on the same time, manafort and cohen. trump has largely praised manafort. while he had a coop ragsz deal, he's seen as someone who's
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stayed loyal, where cone flipped on the president. trump has accused his former fixer of lying about him to get a lighter sentence. he's been sentenced to three years in prison and has to report in about two months. there are conflicting stories where cohen's team said the trump's team dangling it and now we vethe president today for the first time saying cohen directly asked for that. i asked rudy giuliani a few hours ago about that and he said yes, trump told him cohen went to him in the first couple weeks after the april 2018 raid and asked about a pardon and trump said no. of course when i talked to rudy giuliani yesterday on this subject, he didn't say that. trump, giuliani, davis, all have
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significant credibility issues and changed their stories time and time again. >> what do you make of this mutual cortship of the pardon? would you like one? seems like a tease going back and forth. >> prosecutors have a term for -- we call it obstruction of justice. it's unusual because we vethe president who has the ability to grant a pardon. you may see someone encouraging a witness to leave town borecor become unavailable. the president and his former lawyer saying you're a liar, you're a liar the reality is they both are. i wouldn't want to have either one of them on the witness stand unless they were backed up by cooperating documents and other witnesses. >> i know this is always an insight game. do we know who's advising the
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president legally? when it's bad legally or constitutionally, whose there? >> i believe it's folks like emmet flood in terms of the mueller investigation the russia probe. butads you've seen he doesn't have the most credible role because he may have coerced cohen into lying before congress about the trump tower moscow deal. we need more reporting on that. but he was involved in altering that statement he gave to congress. these are people surrounding the president who may not be giving him the best advice. >> are they telling him what he wants to hear? >> potentially but anyway, he just tweets what he wants to tweet and i think we're losing sight of the big picture here which is the president admitted he was discussing pardons with michael cohen and that was just
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after the raid on michael cohen's home and office by the fbi. so if he was discussing pardons with someone who's about to flip on him, who else is he discussing pardon with? >> that's a hell of an analysis there. cohen asked his lawyer to explore a potential pardon last year. davis said he had a joint defense agreement with the president. it appeared to contradict his testimony last week for the house oversight committee. let's watch that. >> i'm ashamed of my own feelings. i publicly accepted responsibility by pleading guilty in the southern district of new york and i have never asked for nor would i accept a pardon from president trump. >> is that credible, what he just said? going to prison using the one out he had at hand which is i've
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had a decent relationship with this president, maybe he'll get me a pardon? >> cohen needs be very careful from this point forward about telling the truth. his narrative is i lied, i plead guilty. now i'm a new guy, committed to telling the truth and any effort he makes that dev yates from the straight and narrow path will damaging to him. he looks very credible in front of the congress. he did a couple of things to demonstrate credibility. this is very unclear about why he would lie about a simple a matter and it may be that it's a matter of timing is the truth. but going forward, cohen needs act with extreme care for telling the truth. >> when you're winning a game of eight ball in pool, don't scratch.
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that's the danger for him right now. what a team. coming up the house oversight committee didn't need coop ragsz to get the security clearance documents they were seeking. they got a leak. and somebody in the white house is not friendly towards jared and ivanka. they're leaking the bad stuff. why couldn't they clear the background check? what's wrong with their background? what's wrong with their background you know that look? that life of the party look. walk it off look. one more mile look. reply all look. own your look with fewer lines. there's only one botox® cosmetic. it's the only one fda approved to temporarily make frown lines, crow's feet and forehead lines look better. the effects of botox® cosmetic may spread hours to weeks after injection, causing serious symptoms. alert your doctor right away as difficulty swallowing, speaking, breathing, eye problems, or muscle weakness may be a sign of a life-threatening condition. do not receive botox® cosmetic
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♪ the witch hunt, the fact is i guess we got 81 letters. there was no collusion. it was a hoax. there was no anything and they want to do that instead of getting legislation passed. 81 people or organizations got letters. it's a disgrace to our country. they want to focus on nonsense. >> that was president trump earlier this week criticizing democrats for their wide ranging investigations, particularly the documents the house judiciary committee requested from over 80 trump associates and organizations including members of the president's family and include ivanka but they're turn
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and house speaker nancy pelosi said they're not off limits. this is not their children at home. and makes requests for documents on the security clearance process, including for trump's son in law, jared kushner. and democratic congressman of rhode island who serves on the house judiciary committee. i'm so glad you come on, by inway. i have seen a lot of skull dugry unmy life but i've never heard of white house staff people who are theoretically loyal to the president leaking stuff to a committee that's investigating him. what's going on? can you figure out if these
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check ozen the president's family members are now floating down to the house committees investigating him? how is that happening? >> there are clearly whistleblowers within administration. security clearances are to protect the national security nrbtest of the united states. they're only given to people trustworthy and can keep confidential some of the most essential secrets. so when they raise objections to jared and ivanka trump getting security clearances and the president ordered they get them anyway and lied about them, there's a lot of concern. i think the less on is cooperate with these investigations, furnish the documents being requested so we can do our oversight because there are
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conscientious whistleblowers. >> what do you make of these two? do you think they're just beneficiaries of nepotism? they're well off, obviously. they have the president's love, of course and the president's deputeizing them for world peace, all kinds of things. not fashion statements or looking good and not showing with these public apeernszs. he's not using them like that. how do we make peace in the middle east for example? judicial reform, all this stuff >> i mean the president made the decision to hire them as senior advisors to the president. they're involved in very significant work and ivanka trump during the same peer of time was provided with trademarks from the chinese, jared kushner's family was bailed out by the same company trying to sell nuclear technologies to the saudis.
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so there's a lot of reason to be concerned and to understand why they were objected to by intelligence and law enforcement community and why the president ordered they be given and lie about it. the president just said in a clip you showed, all we're worried about is investigations. the good news is we can do both things. transform politics too, really make a big difference in empowering voters for the people. we've begun hearings on driving down prescription drug prices. >> any move will probably infuriate the president. trump regularly claims they're trying to impeach himt and have said privately does not want his children testifying on capitol
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hill. tip o'neale doctrine was don't go after family members, it's bad politics. in this case, is it annex troedinary situation where it's good government to go after the kids? >> i don't think we're going to have a choice. we have a responsibility to find out what happened. these are not kids doing their own thing. that would be off limits. they're senior members of the administration in the middle of important events with real questions about what's happening. we would be derelict in our responsibility. we want to lim that public hearings if we can, collect information first. but simply because they're the children that they're off lim andts they can engage in whatever condoct they want. the president made the decision to hire them, put them in the white house.
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they then become members of the administration. they're subsdwleeject to the sas and standards as everyone else in the white house. up next the president's advisors want him to reign in the wild campaign rally performances and present a more dignified presidential image in 2020. let's watch him. >> i'm very presidential. ladies and gentlemen, thank you for being here tonight. >> that's him pretending to be presidential. can he pull it off? that's next. ffn he pull it o that's next. if you have moderate to severe psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis, little things can be a big deal. that's why there's otezla. otezla is not an injection or a cream. it's a pill that treats differently. for psoriasis, 75% clearer skin is achievable,
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president trump in 2020. most focus is on someone not yet running, former vice president, joe biden. the "new york times" reports that he's spent most of the time in a nonincumbent rose garden. well, this week former new york mayor and ohio sen itter shary brown announced they would not be running for president. what biden's anticipated entry has done is that it's started to clear one lane, the white male moderate leaning lane but hasn't stirred up anyone else. and massachusetts senator elizabeth warren who called for the break up of some of the biggest tech companies like google, amazon and facebook. she discussed her plan a short time ago on "the beat." >> what this is about is about competition, all those little businesses and start-up
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businesses and entrepreneurs who twuntd put their products on amazon or google and who are enormous competitive disadvantage. meanwhile as the president watches the democratic field take shape, he's itching to upstage them with rallies of his own. but campaign officials believe an early reelection strategy built on his role in dignified settings such as the oval office will do more than his free willy arena speeches. of course there's plenty of reason to believe that will never happen. f reason to believe that will never happen ey're america's biopharmaceutical researchers. pursuing life-changing cures in a country that fosters innovation here, they find breakthroughs... like a way to fight cancer by arming a patient's own t-cells... because it's not just about the next breakthrough... it's all the ones after that.
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are you getting low costs backed by a satisfaction guarantee? if not, talk to schwab. a modern approach to wealth management. politico reported that the advisors are running a rose garden reelection campaign to talked a vantage oof the trapings of the president's office. according to president trump that should be easy. >> it's much easier, by the way too, act presidential than what weir are ardoing here tonight, believe me. with the exception of the late, great abraham lincoln, i can be more presidential than any president that's ever held this office, that i can tell you. >> remember i used to say how easy it is to be presidential but you all would be out of
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here. you'd be so board. i'm very presidential. ladies and gentlemen, thank you for being here tonight. be a little bit wild and have a lot of fun than say he's not acting presidential. anyone can act president. >> act, the key word. senior washington news correspondent up in boston. i'm going to start with you, kimberley, by the way. congratulations. what do you think of the guy who talks in front of the audience rupert pumpkin and i'm deciding how i'm going to show myself to you. should i act like a president or a manic character and he gets it right in real time? >> i want to know the advisors who want him to be quote on quote presidential have been. there is no sense that is what is coming. did you see his cpac speech?
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>> fidel castro led what other stream of conscienceness if you don't have a consciousness. >> the idea of him staying in the rose garden is amusing. i think they'll keep a few roses with him wherever he goes. i've covered a lot of his rallied during the campaign and seen him since in action. he requires energy infusion in person. it's not enough his twitter follower number goes up. he needs visceral human -- >> the mayor of new york for years. how am i doing? >> how am i doing? and -- >> two more topics.
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joe biden has been restrained but his challenge could be his highest poll number will be the first day of his campaign because they're already going after him. >> i think his biggest disadvantage is it's no longer four years ago. >> where were you four years ago? >> right. so we're already seeing democrats being very critical of the obama administration. every video from the anita hill hearing and everything before is going to seem terribly out of of step in 2020. i think it's tough when you're going against -- >> the cosmos has shifted. >> and i've been obsessively reporting on what joe is up to. people in his innercircle are calling around the country
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looking for allies to help explain and put uncontext various -- and here's what he meant in 1982 about this. here's what he meant about anita hull. here's how it fits in the that context of long ago. >> you're not winning. you're playing defense. let me explain and myself to joe this morning. the pretty easy question. >> would you call your safl proud capitalist? >> oh, i don't know. the labels, i'm not sure any of them fit. >> i'll break it down even more. you consider yourself a
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capitalist? >> again the label -- i'm a small business person so that part of the system you call capitalist, i get. >> do you consider yourself a capitalist and does capitalism work? >> i don't look at myself with a label. i think right now the way capitalism is working in the united states, it's not doing what it once did. >> just quickly. what's his problem? >> if that's the level of conversation democrats are going to have about capitalism and socialism, which is a fake argument. rose, harpers, bridges, social security, medicare, interstate rules, those are socialist -- >> also bulding the railroad. >> what is the problem some. >> a history of 200 something years of mixed capitalism,
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public/private, why do people have to decide now? >> because people are scared. it's this idea that democrats can embrasz this idea of making money in the market. >> how do they think groceries get to the safeway? the beers on the bar? it's called the market. people bring it from the market. >> i am not sawing there's no need and people don't want to touch it. >> let me tell you something she has to be refined. and if you throw out the market, what are you left with?
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the fact is donald trump's impeachable crimes have been committed in broad daylight. trump asking the fbi director, james comey to block his investigations of national security advisor, muccal flynn. trump firing the fbi director for refusing to do so and fire him for refusing under the law. and firing his attorney general for following the justice rules and a case where he played a role. and try this for high crimes and misdemeanors. hiding a matter from the voters that couturned the election. secretly signing checks month after month to pay for the silence of women he had relationship with. and what about ring leadership of his people and to win the support of foreign power, russia. and democrats who control the
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house of representatives and should consider what they are already looking at and not spend two more years looking for the cherry to put on top of the cake donald trump has already baked and that's "hardball" for now. "all in" with chris hayes. tonight on "all in." >> he doesn't give you questions or orders. he speaks in a code. >> new messaging from the president for two of his criminal colleagues. tonight what the president is signaling to his newly sentenced campaign manager. >> his lawyer went out of his way, actually, to make a statement last night no collusion with russia, there was absolutely none. >> and what he was signaling to his about to be jailed fixer. >> michael cohen lied about the pardon. >> then the abr

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